Longer Work Hours Raise Stroke Risk
According to a new study from University College London, working long hours may significantly increase a person's risk of suffering a stroke. Researchers found that working 55 hours a week or more increased stroke risk by at least 33 percent.
The researchers used 17 studies in order to track data for more than 500,000 men and women over 7.5 years. In addition to the overall stroke risk increase, the study found that the more a person worked, the higher that risk grew. The scientists determined that for those working between 41 to 48 hours a week had a 10 percent greater chance of stroke but those working 49 to 54 hours a week saw that risk roughly triple to 27 percent. Even after adjusting for other risk factors such as high blood pressure, smoking, alcohol use and physical activity, researchers found the results didn't change.
A survey conducted last year reported that Americans work an average of 47 hours a week. Not only does this almost add an extra work day to the typical work week, but based on this research, it may put many Americans at higher risk for a stroke or other coronary conditions.
Researchers say this was the largest study to be conducted investigating the relationship between cardiovascular health and working hours. Results were published in The Lancet.